Tue January 1, 2013
Bills owner Ralph Wilson hands over power to Russ Brandon
The Buffalo Bills announced Tuesday that owner Ralph Wilson, Jr. has handed over power to run the organization to Bills CEO Russ Brandon.
The Bills held a news conference during the noon hour at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park.
Brandon met with Wilson in Detroit Monday. Brandon told reporters it was during that visit that Wilson he "granted me full authority with zero restrictions" to take full power and run the Bills organization.
"We had a wonderful visit. It was a rather emotional visit," said Brandon. "Yesterday, when he provided me with the opportunity, and told me he was passing the torch to run the operation with no restrictions... it was a very daunting and emotional day."
Brandon has worked for Wilson the last 16-years. "Mr. Wilson has been a mentor to me, a father figure, a dear friend of mine," said Brandon.
Brandon firmly announcing his plans to help turnaround the organization. The team ended another season Sunday without heading into the playoffs.
"This brand has been tarnished," said Brandon. "It is unacceptable because we just haven’t won enough games."
Brandon has vowed to lead the franchise into the future with a "new legacy."
Brandon also made a proclamation of sorts to Bills fans, promising "forward thinking". Brandon said he will work to "identify and hire world-class people to bring into organization.
Brandon said will most importantly "empower people to do their jobs." The future of general manager Buddy Nix was also outlined. Brandon noted that he would empower Nix to make drafting decisions and decisions on free agents.
Brandon said he is tired of hearing that the Bills don't spend money and wants that to end.
Tuesday's announcement comes one day after the organization fired Bills head coach Chan Gailey.
Brandon said the number one focus, right now, is selecting a new head coach.
"I'll leave no stone unturned. We are going to get better," said Brandon.